Sunday, 31 January 2016

Psalm 9 - David and Unnamed Goliath Quiet Book Page

Although he is not named, Psalm 9 was probably written to remember the victory over Goliath. Here is a David and Goliath quiet book page I made from a printable I found online. David's arm swings his sling, the stone sails through the air, and when it hits Goliath, he can fall over:


Memory Verse: "Those who know your name trust in you, for you, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you. Sing the praises of the Lord, enthroned in Zion; proclaim among the nations what he has done." Psalm 9:10,11.

Materials needed to make the David and Unnamed Goliath Quiet Book Page:

  • A4 felt background sheet, we used red.
  • thick white felt big enough to iron the bushes scene on to
  • white stiffened felt to iron David's arm, Goliath, and the stone on to
  • three split pins
  • white thread
  • iron on transfer paper suitable for your printer
  • the printable illustration by Carol Stevens at www.lds.org
Print out the image onto iron on transfer paper. If you want David and Goliath to appear on the same sides as they do in the illustration, make sure you flip the image first because it will get flipped back again when you iron it onto the transfer paper.

Cut out the David and bushes scene from the transfer paper. Try to use as many rounded edges as you can to minimize the chance of the transfer paper peeling off in the future. Iron it onto thick white felt, following the instructions of your transfer paper. You may not be able to use as high a setting on the iron as recommended if you are using acrylic felt as it might get burned. My image still stuck to the felt on a lower setting.

Cut out the David and bushes scene again, this time leaving a border of white felt. Fold the felt where the A, B, and C markings are, and cut two angled slits to make a small hole at each point.

Cut out David's arm, Goliath, and the stone as one section from the transfer paper and iron onto the stiffened felt following the instructions of your transfer paper. Again, use a lower setting so as not to burn the felt if it's acrylic.


Cut out David's arm, Goliath, and the stone from the stiffened felt but do not leave a border this time. Fold the stiffened felt where the A, B, and C markings are, and cut two angled slits to make a small hole at each point.


Line up the corresponding holes: A, B, and C. Make sure David's arm and Goliath are sitting on top of the bushes and the arm of the stone is behind the bushes. Insert a split pin in each hole and bend the splits at the back so they can't come out but allow the pieces to move fairly freely.

Sew the bushes scene onto the background sheet along the sides and bottom, ensuring you do not catch any of the pieces along the way.

Finished!

Difficulty Level = Easy

This page involves very little sewing, and if you wanted too, you could hot glue that small section.

Key Learning Areas and Skills

  • Psalm 9 - This page tells the story of Psalm 9, where David praises God for the victory given against Goliath, the unnamed Champion, and inadvertently, the victory He gives through the death of the son, Jesus, symbolized by the red felt background.
  • Rotation - the circular movement of an object around a fixed point, like David's arm, the stone, and Goliath.
  • Fine Motor Skills - all quiet books encourage fine motor skills through turning pages, and on this page, through turning David's arm, the stone, and Goliath.

Read the Chapter

Psalm 9

Devotional

As I already have a David and Goliath quiet book page for 1 Samuel 17, I thought I might be able to find a Psalm commemorating the victory to use this page for. It is so cute, I couldn't resist doing it whether I could find something or not. I was very surprised that Goliath is not really mentioned by name anywhere else but in 1 Samuel 17, where the story of David and Goliath takes place, although his sword, his brother and his sons are mentioned. As a side note, there is an apocryphal Psalm, Psalm 151, which mentions Goliath by name. Click here to read about it on Wikipedia.

Nevertheless, Jewish tradition and Christian scholars both assert Psalm 9 was written to remember the victory over Goliath. It was probably written later in David's life when he was king in Jerusalem since Jerusalem is mentioned and before David conquered it, it was a Jebusite city.

Read Psalm 9 and see which sections you can identify with the story. I noticed:
  • verse 1 - I will tell of all your wonderful deeds... i.e. helping me kill Goliath
  • verse 3 - David mentions his enemies falling, just as Goliath did
  • verse 5 - God has destroyed the wicked and blotted out their name, and this psalm, although about the victory over Goliath, refuses to mention his name!
  • verse 10 - those who know God's name will put their trust in Him, just like David did when he went out as a child to meet a giant without any armor, sword, or the backing of his people
  • verse 11 - declare God's deeds among His people, just as David is doing in this Psalm
  • verse 16 - the wicked is snared in the work of his own hands, as Goliath brought about his own death by setting himself up as a poster boy against God 
  • verse 20 - asking God to help people realize that they are but men, Goliath may have been a giant and champion warrior, but he was still mortal
The title of Psalm 9 says it is to be sung to the tune "The Death of the Son". This phrase is interestingly explained in the book The Titles of the Psalms, published in 1904, and written by James William Thirtle.



I read on page 71 that it can also be translated to mean "death of a champion" ie Goliath, and that it was interpreted into Aramaic by Jewish scholars as the death of "a man who stood between the two" (ie army camps) when Aramaic became the common language.

When I read about the death of "a man who stood between the two" I knew Psalm 9 had a double meaning referring to Jesus - the man who stood between Heaven and Earth.

Read Psalm 9 again with this context in mind and see what you find. I noticed:
  • verse 1 - I will tell of all your wonderful deeds... i.e. the death of the son, the man who stood between the two realms mediating for man before God.
  • verse 10 - those who know your name, Jesus, trust in you
  • verse 11- proclaim among the nations what He has done. How the son loved us so much that He was willing to die in our place and take the punishment for our sin.
  • verse 13,14 - lift me up from the gates of death (resurrect me) that I may declare your praises in the gates of the daughter of Zion {(New) Jerusalem} and rejoice in your salvation, salvation being the meaning of the name Jesus! Jesus is the only one who is able to give life to those deserving of death, and proved that it is possible by His resurrection.
  • verse 16 - the wicked are ensnared by the works of their own hands, as be all would be except we accept the covering of God's grace, Jesus.
If you notice things I have missed, please share and comment below!

Sunday, 24 January 2016

Lei Flower Baby Doll Dress

Since our lei flowers have been out since my Easy Peasy Lei Flower Quiet Book Page post, I decided to make the baby doll dress I have been threatening for a while.



It has proved a great way of using up some of our leftover artificial lei flowers.

Another idea is to glue them down on your drawing or painting. We did that too, but I don't have a photo, sorry.

Materials needed to make our Lei Flower Baby Doll Dress:


  • a baby doll to measure
  • a baby singlet in stretch knit material, mine was size 00, but smaller is probably better
  • thread to match
  • artificial lei flowers
Put the singlet on the doll inside out. And pin down the sides so it fits your baby. When we got to this point, Tahlia said "No, not pins" and put baby safely away in her pram! I waited until she went to bed to continue, since she was being such a good Mummy.


Next, take the dress of the doll and adjust the pins so they are even and symmetrical.


Sew along your pinned lines. Make sure your armhole edges line up properly. Sew perpendicular to the edge at the armholes rather than in the same line you have been following. This creates a slight sleeve and works better for a thick edge. Trim the excess. Since it is stretch knit material, you do not need to finish the edges to prevent fraying.


Put the dress back on your baby doll and turn up the hem to mark the length you want.


Take the dress back off and pin and sew the hem close to the bottom edge. 


Trim the excess.


Lastly, turn the dress back in the right way and pin doubled lei flowers all around the edge and at one shoulder. Set your sewing machine to 0 stitch length, and put it on a wide zig zag setting. This will make it go back and forth over one spot, creating a short line. Use this setting to sew down each pile of lei flowers. Trim the thread.

Done!

We shall see if Tahlia is impressed or not in the morning!

Saturday, 16 January 2016

How to Make a Felt Board

I recently had the opportunity to visit a recycle shop in Melbourne and came away with two treasures.

Just before we were about to leave with nothing, I quickly checked down the last isle, saying to my sister "Just in case I find a massive roll of blue felt". God is certainly blessing this little project of mine, and as those last words came out of my mouth, my eyes rested on... a massive roll of blue felt. Felt is rather expensive, and I have a feeling this roll is wool felt, which is even more expensive. It is good quality anyway, although slightly dusty on the ends. And blue is strangely a difficult colour to find, and I tend to need it a lot. There are only so many other colours you can use for the sky!

I have been wondering what to do with a picture frame that has had the glass broken when we moved, and now I know...




I present our 60x80cm [24"x 32"] felt board.

Blue is an ideal colour for a felt board as it can easily represent sky and water. Simply lay a piece of green felt over the lower portion to represent the ground, and cut away portions where you would like water to appear.  See the example below from the Betty Lukens website, where you can buy many Biblical and non-biblical felt boards and felt board play sets.




Materials needed to make a felt board:

  • a large picture frame with glass removed
  • a piece of felt large enough to cover the back board of the picture frame
  • double sided tape or contact

Take the back board out of the frame.




Lay the double sided tape in rows across the board and peel the back off it, or use double sided contact. I recommend a smaller gap between the tape than I did as I did get a few bubbles.




Roll your length of felt up so that you can unroll it onto your board to minimise bunching. Trim the edges to the size of the back board after it has been attached to avoid issues with lining them up. Last, put your board back into the frame and secure it.

Done!



When playing, simply lean it against the wall. You can also use wheat bags to ensure it doesn't slip down, especially if you have floor boards or tiles rather than carpet. They can become hills or rivers or anything else you can imagine. We made a beach scene with rocks and the ocean.




I found a couple of bags of felt board pieces at an opp shop!

Since it is a picture frame, it can be hung on the wall for storage (with a new picture whenever you like).

Check out the Menorah Felt Board Play Set we made for Hanukkah.

Saturday, 9 January 2016

Genesis 28 - Jacob's Ladder Quiet Book Page

In Genesis chapter 28, God appears to Jacob in a dream at the top of a ladder stretching from Heaven to Earth, upon which angels are ascending and descending, and promises to bless him.


Memory verse: "I am with you and will watch over you wherever you go, and I will bring you back to this land. I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you.” Genesis 28:15.

Materials needed to create the Jacob's Ladder quiet book page:

  • A4 felt background sheet in a dark colour. I used navy.
  • felt scraps, in skin colour, grey, dark brown, mid brown, and red
  • 36 angel beads, make sure the hole goes through them horizontally not vertically
  • yellow or gold ribbon/s
  • sewing thread to match each colour of ribbon and felt
  • a sleeping Jacob template - I used this colouring page from azcolouing.com
Cut out the template as a complete Jacob and position it at the bottom of your sheet of felt. Cut two lengths of your ladder side ribbons and burn the ends so they do not fray. Position them so the ends will be underneath the template of Jacob and run off the upper edge of the page. You can tuck them in when you sew the pages back to back to make a book. Pin the ribbons in place temporarily. Cut eight lengths of your rung ribbons to fit the width of the ladder and burn the ends so they do not fray. String on your angel beads, one on the highest rung ribbon, two on the second and so forth until you have eight on the lowest ribbon. Pin the ribbons so they are evenly spaced and the ends will lie underneath the ladder side ribbons. You can remove the ladder side ribbons, then sew down the rung ribbon ends. Re-position your side ribbons and sew in place.



Cut out each section of Jacob to use as a pattern out of a new template (you will have to print it out about 3 times):

  1. torso, adding a small allowance along the edges that will be covered by his blanket, arm and face
  2. blanket
  3. face, adding a small allowance to what will be covered by his hair and the rock
  4. hair, forget about the ear, just make his hair follow it's course had their been no ear sticking out, add a small allowance for what will be covered by the rock
  5. rock
  6. arm
Sew each piece down in the order listed above, matching your threads to your chosen colours. Use the complete Jacob template to make it easier to line up the pieces. 

Finished!

Difficulty Level = Intermediate

This page is rather easy, but things can go wrong, particularly when sewing down the ribbons which house the angel beads. Try to get it tight so the angel beads don't hang down, but sit straight on the page.

Key Learning Areas and Skills

  • Genesis 28 - This page tells the story of Jacob's ladder, where God appeared to Jacob in a dream and reassured him that the promises of land and descendants given to Abraham and Issac would be fulfilled through his line.
  • Counting - count the angel beads. 
  • Directions - up, down, left, right - flip the angels so they are ascending or descending the ladder, and move the angels left or right across the ribbon.
  • Gematria - the meaning of the number eight in scripture. See the devotional section below.
  • Angels - there are different types of angels - archangels, seraphim, cherubim, guardian, etc.
  • Fine Motor Skills - all quiet books encourage fine motor skills through turning pages, and on this page, through moving the angel beads.

Read the Chapter

Genesis 28

Devotional

In the previous chapter of Genesis, Jacob has just stolen his brother's blessing, not to be confused with his brother's birthright which he willingly sold to Jacob in Genesis 25. He now has to run for fear of his life. His father sends him to his mother's family in search of a Godly wife, and on the way, Jacob has this dream. I assume Jacob was feeling rather guilty and unworthy of the blessing he has just stolen, and God takes pity on him and reassures him that he is the one who will fulfill His purposes.

I have a feeling that Jacob desired to be chosen by God so badly that he was willing to steal to get it. I can relate to this because I wanted to be baptized so badly that I was willing to lie in order to have it happen. I do not fully agree with all the tenets of my denomination, but I said I did in order to get baptized. Looking back, I can see many ways to get around this issue, and indeed, you no longer need to pledge all these things prior to baptism. But I can definitely relate to Jacob's situation here, and I guess it is encouraging to see God's response!

I chose to have eight rungs on the ladder. The number eight in scripture has to do with new beginnings, and I suppose that is just what Jacob is getting here. Also, the gematria of Jesus is 888. I am not talking about numerology, but numbers in scripture can deepen your understanding of the plain text. Of course, it can be taken too far... You can read about the relationship of Hebrew and Greek letters and words to their numeric values (similar to Roman numerals) in this brief article on gematria by Matt Slick on the Christian Apologetics and Research Ministry website.

As I mentioned earlier, the ladder represents Jesus (John 1:50-51), and I will refer you to this very short but very good explanation by LaVista Church of Christ.

Thursday, 7 January 2016

Easy Peasy Lei Flower Quiet Book Page

I am always trying to think of ways to make quick and easy quiet book pages that are tons of fun and look terrific, especially when making presents.

Here is an idea I came up with last night, that I think fits all of those requirements!

Here is how to make an artificial lei flower quiet book page:






Instead of having to cut out felt flowers and sew them all together, simply layer two artificial lei flowers on top of a piece of felt (to add stability) and sew a buttonhole to fit three buttons.  Make sure they are roughly the same size so the flowers are interchangeable. Cut the buttonhole open with a seam ripper.



Then trim the felt at the back.




Next, burn the ends of two ribbons and a piece of rik rak to prevent fraying, and sew them down for the flower stems. Then sew on your buttons at the top of each stem.



Done!

Key Learning Areas and Skills

  • Buttonholes - practice how to button a buttonhole.
  • Fine Motor Skills - all quiet books encourage fine motor skills through turning pages, and on this page, through buttoning.

Difficulty Level = Easy

This page was so easy that it came together very quickly whilst I was watching a movie with my husband last night. It requires very little sewing skills.

Having said that, I did have a lot of trouble working out my one step buttonhole function on my current sewing machine.  The manual it came with was for another model, which had a four step buttonhole function... Even after watching countless You Tube videos on how to do it, I still couldn't get it to work and had to call the company support line for help!

Here are the steps and settings I used for the one step buttonhole in case you have trouble, and also as a record for me in case I forget again next time:

  1. Set your stitch length to just under '1', or a very low setting equivalent on your machine. Apparently the 'F' setting on my machine is for stretch stitches.
  2. Set your stitch tension to around '4' or '5', or the normal mid-level setting equivalent on your machine.
  3. Turn the dial until you have selected the buttonhole function on the stitch selections.
  4. Change your normal foot to the buttonhole foot and insert your button into the measuring section at the back.
  5. Pull down the buttonhole lever. Remember to push it to the back position so it clicks forward when it reaches the end of the buttonhole and begins to do the other side, as it clearly instructs you to do on the lever itself (the one vital step I forgot lol).

Use up your Leftover Lei Flowers:

Monday, 4 January 2016

Genesis 15 - Abraham can you count the stars? Quiet Book Page

In Genesis chapter 15, God promises Abraham that his decedents will be like the stars in number - uncountable!  I tried to make the stars on this quiet book page uncountable too.


Memory verse: "He took him outside and said, “Look up at the sky and count the stars—if indeed you can count them.” Then he said to him, “So shall your offspring be.”Abram believed the Lord, and he credited it to him as righteousness." Genesis 15:5,6.

Materials needed to create the Abraham can you count the stars? quiet book page:

  • A4 felt background sheet in a dark colour. I used black.
  • star die-cut felt sheet in blue - available from Spotlight stores or Arbee online.
  • multi-coloured star buttons in mixed colours - as many as you can get your hands on
  • sewing thread
  • a star template - I used this star template from smallpersonalbiz.com
Choose a few star sizes and shapes from the template. Make sure to include the six-pointed star of David, because both David and our Messiah, Jesus, were Abraham's descendents. Cut them out of the star die-cut felt and arrange them on the page. Sew them down.

Arrange the star buttons on the page. I used pins through the holes in the buttons to anchor them where I wanted them. Sew them on. I set my sewing machine to a stitch length of zero and put it on the zig zag setting. Then I adjusted the stitch width until it was the right size to fit my buttons. I found it much quicker to sew them on like this rather than by hand, which would have taken ages. For newer sewing machines, you can buy a button foot especially for this purpose.

Finished!

Difficulty Level = Easy

This page is rather easy, and although it may seem fairly non-interactive, it is! 

Key Learning Areas and Skills

  • Genesis 15 - This page is supposed to illustrate the difficulty in counting the stars, just as God wanted to assure Abraham that it would be that difficult to count his promised future offspring. Also, believing God is counted as righteousness!
  • Counting - Younger children can count the star buttons. The die-cut stars make the page more difficult as the child grows. And because some of the die-cut stars get cut in half when cutting the felt into star shapes, it makes it really hard to count the number of stars accurately. Also, many of them are hidden behind the star buttons. 
  • Star shapes - stars shapes can have different numbers of points.
  • Colours and star colours - make sure you use different coloured star buttons for this learning area. Stars are also classified by colour, which is related to their temperature. Find a chart and some other star classification activities for the older child here on hmxearthscience.com.
  • Fine Motor Skills - all quiet books encourage fine motor skills through turning pages, and on this page, through learning to point at the stars.

Read the Chapter

Genesis 15

Devotional

The covenant ceremony described in this chapter that takes place between God and Abraham was a very common ceremony used in the middle east back then to "cut" a covenant. Both parties were supposed to walk in the blood between the animals.  However, God did not ask Abraham to walk, and instead walked twice Himself. If you can't guess, this is a foreshadow of the cross and how Jesus would pay the price in His own blood for our side of the covenant that we couldn't keep.  For an excellent and brief explanation, read my fellow bloggers post Walking the Bloodpath by Marty Solomon from Covered In His Dust.

Also in this chapter, God predicts that Abraham's decedents would be so-journers and slaves for four hundred years in a foreign county (Egypt) after which time, they would be given the land God promised to Abraham. Genesis 15 helps set the scene for the next book in the Bible, Exodus.

Sunday, 3 January 2016

Genesis Teaser

Here is a teaser of the title page for the Genesis quiet book...



It was my aim to get the whole book done this last year.  Having to move house has ensured this goal has failed, but, I did put the time my sewing machine was not set up to good use, and started this blog.  So I guess it was to your advantage, as you might not get to see any of it otherwise!!

Ironically, Genesis is a good place to start!

Read more about my Bible Quiet Book Project here.